Innovator’s Challenge: Marketing Beyond Your Means

In the scramble to stand out, a lot of brands go about it the wrong way. With the best intentions, they focus on overly produced content, supported by irrelevant influencers in posts that scream at consumers, instead of converse with them. So what can brands do to get ahead of the social game? I had the chance to interview Elin Dannerstedt, the CEO of nail company NCLA to discover their secret sauce. In a nutshell, Dannerstedt aims to make everything instagrammable. It’s the ultimate question she and her team must answer before they release any creative campaigns. At its core, this is about being surprising and genuinely interesting from the inside out; in a noisy world, that is what it takes to be instagrammed and shared. It’s not just about adding marketing to an existing product lineup, but making constant, iterative tweaks to products to make them grab our attention. These lessons are applicable for any brand, in any category. Here are some principles to consider.

Pursue Bold Partnerships

Lacking the resources of their deep-pocketed competitors, NCLA chose to partner with celebrities, brands and influencers to catapult their brand. Rather than just sign a licensing deal, they put their partners in the driver’s seat and got them involved in the designs themselves. Their collaborations with Beyonce, Hello Kitty and Glamor Magazine were a team effort, designed from the ground up. As a brand, the company you keep says a lot about who you are. Pick your allies wisely.

Ask yourself… who can I partner with to brighten my trajectory?

Collaboration with BEyonce